Friday, January 13, 2006

Boobs, boobs, boobs!

Yesterday morning, as I was leaving for my mammogram appointment, my cousin Ryan gamely called out, "Have a smashing time!"

Yes, nothing like having your tits mechanically stamped flat from every angle to really kick off the day. I asked the woman who was maneuvering my world-class orbs into position how many of these she did every day. She said, "About 50."

That means this angel deals with about 100 boobs per day. To the average male, this sounds like a dream job but the only real advantage would be to see boobs in their infinite variety. Before me, a towering black lesbian - after me, two old ladies - one a skinny, little white haired character, the other a big, fat Russian. No two boobs are the same, not even on the same gal. (My nickname used to be "Lefty.")

Other than Gustav Klimpt's classic painting, "The Three Ages of Woman", you rarely see an old woman's breasts shown anywhere. In fact, when the average person tries to buy a poster or print of Klimpt's depiction, the old woman is almost always cropped out of the picture showing just the first two ages of woman, the smooth youthful ones.

I've always had a love/hate relationship with my own boobs. They arrived like gangbusters in the 5th grade, just as my parent's divorce was beginning. I tried to hide them but I didn't fool everyone. I believe my teacher, Mrs. Merrill finally sent a note home, something to effect of, "This girl needs a bra." I don't remember ever wearing A-cups, I began at B.

Suddenly, all my boy buddies started treating me differently and acting silly around me. Though my body raced ahead, my insides were still a kid. I could see jealousy in the faces of girls and goofy lust in the faces of boys and it was all happening against my will.

In Jr. High and High School, they made me feel fat, of course. Nevertheless, I still didn't comprehend their power. I started to get a sense of it one Halloween evening, dressed up as a mouse. I'd borrowed a black leotard from a friend and the only one she had was backless so I went braless. Standing on the sidelines cheering the football team (yes, I was a dumb blonde cheerleader,) I heard a plaintive yell: "WILL YOU MARRY ME?!? PLEASE? WILL YOU MARRY ME? MOUSE GIRL?"

On and on he went, looking quite genuinely pained and pathetic. I didn't know him but we were about the same age and it looked like he might cry at any moment. My friends thought it was hilarious and I almost felt bad for him without knowing why. Finally, one of his friends came along, politely apologized to me and gingerly peeled him off the fence that separated us. The young man's own hormones had turned on him, rendering him helpless and I (we?) only added to his torture. I mean, I was jumping up and down, fer chrissakes.

By the time the 80s rolled around, I had not only made peace with them but they often paid the bar tab, merely by existing. More recently, I have kept them hidden, taking them out only for special occasions, leading them to be named "The Good China" by The Devil-ettes.

Perhaps when I move to a warmer climate they will experience a rennaissance. I suppose they deserve it - in fact, we all do.


trillwing said...

God, you crack me up. Thanks for another terrific post. Honestly, pre-lactation, I didn't have to worry about the girls too much, but now they seem to have taken on a life of their own. It's alarming!

ArticulateDad said...

*Thanks, Trillwing for the link here.*

A couple days after my first son was born, I returned to our house, to discover that these two TORPEDOES had attached to the front of my wife, and they ominously aimed at me and my son. My jaw dropped like never before.

Now, sure, they had told us dryly (in prenatal class): "a woman's breasts may increase in size as part of the natural lactation process." Geeouch! I mean, nothing could prepare me for that, NOTHING!